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Monday, January 28, 2019

Adventure Time

2018 was a year much like other years. Now it's over. We got older and if we were lucky, we learned some things along the way. Time flies. But time doesn't actually care about you and what you may or may not have learned. It just keeps pulling us along whether we like it or not. Time eventually kills everyone and everything. In this sense, time is an asshole.

Wikipedia defines time thusly: "Time is the indefinite continued progress of existence and events that occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future... Time is often referred to as a fourth dimension, along with three spatial dimensions."

While time, or the fleeting reality of individual moments we know as the "present", marches on its pre-determined course full speed ahead without ever going back, you're expected to keep your hands inside the vehicle at all times. Be sure to remain seated until you arrive safely in your grave. Don't break any rules and definitely don't have any unapproved adventures along the way or else the good citizens may wag their fingers at you disapprovingly.

According to Wikipedia: "An adventure is an exciting experience that is typically a bold, sometimes risky, undertaking. Adventures may be activities with some potential for physical danger."

I am personally afflicted by a condition called adventureitis. Don't laugh. It's a disease. You see, I can't pass by a large empty looking building or a shadowy outcropping in a hillside without being pulled towards the magnetic lure of adventure. I ask myself things like: "If that building gets demolished soon, what secrets will it take to its grave?" and "Is that shadowy outcropping actually a cave full of Native American artifacts or pirate ships?". Well, there's only one way to find out, motherfucker.

But I digress.

In the context of this scholarly dissertation, I think of "adventure" as any opportunity to jump off the ride when no-one's looking, head down that darkened corridor and try all the doors until you find one that leads to an alternate reality-a situation that wasn't accounted for nor approved by those who are (or were formerly) in charge of these things. Such an alternate reality is any physical or esoteric location that, by most standards, either shouldn't exist or one where you would never be allowed to go had you obeyed all the signs like a good robot human. Whether the location happens to be the only remaining example of such obsolete architecture to still exist or maybe it's a semi-active facility that you definitely shouldn't have been able to find a way inside. Being there during the short splinter of time when it was possible is a unique experience that's hard to describe effectively. When you do give in to the call of adventure, your blood races and time seems to stand still. People passing by outside appear more distant and somehow less real when observed through dirty old windows. The personal effects of the previous inhabitants scatter the ground, establishing some historical and personal context for their once vibrant and now discarded reality. In these hidden spaces, the past lingers awaiting the likelihood of its eventual demise. Soon, time itself will march right through these walls and any memory of this place and the time in which it existed will be ground away into oblivion once and for all. Dust to dust.

If time, then, is the "fourth dimension" and adventure is a "bold and risky undertaking" that may or may not lead to "alternate realities", the following soon becomes clear to the attentive student. By jumping off the ride/conveyor at a time and place of your choosing, you have the opportunity to open the door to an alternate reality, the 5th dimension. And here, you are no longer subject to the rules of normal time. You have crossed over into

Adventure Time

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Right. So I didn't get around to posting any updates to the blog or social media last year, because of reasons. Now before I get back to the regularly scheduled updates, which are coming up next, I'm going to kick off this new year of shenanigans with one big stupid "mashup" post. That's this one.

There have been lots of recent Adventure Times that for one reason or another didn't quite work out as an individual blog post or video. So this post here is a mashup representing a small handful of them. And some of these adventures are already not repeatable because their brief window of opportunity has already closed. Or, in the words of the illustrious sage Steve Miller, "Time keeps on slippin' into the future".

TLDR; Lots of dumb words. Here's some pictures:

The Waterhorse

All past present and future photos of Saint Louis will pale in comparison to The Waterhorse. The bar has now been set.

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

The Medical Facility

This large old medical facility housed and served people with mental and physical disabilities. It was constructed in the 1890's and was in operation for over 110 years. It's huge. And mostly empty. It was supposed to be closed a few years ago, but every time I had gone out to check on it, there were still cars in the lot and obvious activity. A recent road trip had us driving nearby so we decided to make a quick detour for some additional reconnaissance. After realizing that finally nobody was home, we quickly ended up inside. As a result, we didn't have a lot of time when we started and had to get going before we were done. As it turns out, the place had only truly shut down a few months prior to our visit. I might revisit sometime.

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Old Theater

This is an old theater. There was a lot more to see here, but it was a late night/early morning after a long day and we spent most of our time here getting lost in the various rooms, the basement and all the unending dark hallways. The ambiance was heightened by the sounds of the voices of my comrades and the music their portable stereo sent echoing through the cavernous space. At times, you question whether the sounds you're hearing are friends or foes. Are those the sounds of people having a good time or being asked to put their hands against the wall? Hard to say sometimes. It's a big fun building to explore. Yes, the colors in the ticket booth area are true to life. And that light coming from the stage is called a "ghost light".

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Hospital

This old hospital was really strange. It's currently running some sort of medical office on one of the lower floors in a small handful of rooms in a remote corner. On the opposite side of the building, there's a walking bridge connected to another medical building that is active. The entire rest of this building is vacant. Navigating through this place is like going through a medical labyrinth as it takes a considerable amount of trial and error just to get from one floor to the next. You might have to go almost all the way up one staircase before you find an unlocked door, then on that floor you will have multiple staircases spread throughout the level but only one will get you to the next level you seek. This dance is continued indefinitely until you finally reach the top floor where the best part is: Old medical equipment. Unfortunately, the top floor also houses some record storage which nurses occasionally still need access to and they of course are going to be escorted by security personnel.. So we didn't stay long. I've been meaning to go back but there's not a lot else to see here; Aside from this area, there's lots of empty rooms. Some have beds in them.

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

That One Quarry

This is a quarry that apparently doesn't get explored often. And I think I figured out why. I was warned in advance that it's watched closely and not to fuck around with it, blah blah blah. One warm summer day I was bored and decided that today is the day. I drove around the whole perimeter looking for weaknesses. Eventually I get in and find a vantage point. One direction looks like pretty easy travels, the other side looks rough, there's elevation changes and thick woods. But the warnings of earlier were bouncing in my head and if I've learned anything it's that you're better hidden where most people don't want to go. So I took the harder route because it looked like it provided more cover. After making it a good distance around the actual quarry where I had hoped to get inside the abandoned structures on the other side, my rustling in the leaves alerted some dogs that lived nearby. They didn't stop barking. I knew this was bad news so I began to head back. At this point, I could have just left and normally I would have. But in my stubbornness, I decided to try going the other way. The place looked pretty deserted. Is someone really going to come by, unlock the gate and drive around looking for me? Doubtful. So I proceed to pass up my exit and continue down the road around the other side, staying in cover as much as possible. I get about halfway around the other side when I hear tires on gravel. The only place there's gravel is inside the fence here..as I pause to listen and mentally process my options, I see a truck just start to peek around the corner in the distance. Fuck. I jumped into the nearest weeds and wait. The mosquitoes were already horrible but laying still in the weeds involuntarily feeding them was even worse. At this point, I'm only just off the road on the other side of a small pile of dirt and rocks that comprise the edge of the road and which was barely taller than myself. I didn't think it would actually hide me so I was mentally prepared to be found by an unfriendly caretaker. The truck barely moved, creeping slower than I imagined was possible. I waited. And waited. He finally pulls up next to me. I thought for sure this dude's going to jump out with a shotgun and ruin my day. But finally he continued rolling on down the road. Of course, I still can't do anything until I know it's clear and I know he has to come back this way. So I continue waiting in the weeds, being eaten alive. Finally this guy comes back again and goes back from whence he came. As soon as reasonably possible, I got up, cursed the little bastards who had feasted on my blood without interruption for the last 15 minutes and got the hell out of there. Next time, I'm taking the other route.

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Miles Mausoleum

Miles Mausoleum is worth a quick visit if you're in the area because it stimulates two of the most important triggers of adventureitis: 1. It's cool 2. It's old. But it's pretty small and what you see is what you get. To quote Wikipedia: "Stephen Miles, a veteran of the War of 1812, was buried here by his son Stephen W. Miles. Due to its size and position on the bluff, the mausoleum is visible from several miles away, and has thus gained a prominent position in local legend. It has been a frequent target for vandals, and as a result all bodies were removed and reburied elsewhere; the fifty-six crypts are now empty and open, and the door to the mausoleum is gone. At this time a renovation of the mausoleum is underway, and cameras are set up on the premises to monitor the mausoleum and surrounding cemetery property."

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

Adventure Time © 2018 sublunar

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